Land Issue in Kenya: Correcting Online Lies

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tana
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Land Issue in Kenya: Correcting Online Lies

Post by tana » Tue Jul 02, 2019 8:36 am

There were 3 older workers in the school I attended who had bought themselves pieces of land, between 3-5 acres. They had bought the farms years earlier in the 1970s. One was a cook, the other was a watchman, and the third was the school driver.

Their stories were known by almost all students. Mind you, these were the ones whose personal details were known by the students. Maybe there were other workers at the school who had also bought land.

What is important to note is that these were people earning around the minimum wage.

One thing that was common among these 3 gentlemen is that they were all known to be quite frugal - for instance, they all owned bicycles, and as much as we students could tell, they appeared to be the kind of people who could go for years without using public transport (i.e. minimum expenses).

All 3 gentlemen were semi-literate. It is important to note that these kind of people didn’t even have bank accounts those days - their banks was under the mattress, or similar place.

Therefore, they saved enough money, and later used it to buy land. Cash. While earning minimum wage.

Now, if a person earning minimum wage in the 1960s and 1970s could afford to buy land, what about people who had higher paying jobs? What about people who knew about banking, operated a bank account, and therefore could get a loan to buy land?

The point I am making is that, from my experiences, from stories of people I know, during the 1960s and 70s, any Kenyan - small scale farmer, small business owner, nurse, bus driver, watchman…- could afford to buy land, IF IT WAS HIS TOP PRIORITY.

Anyone disagreeing with me here, DO NOT depend on books/online articles…interview people who were adults those days (anyone over 70 now). I would be very happy to read an article based on an interview of a Kenyan who was a small scale farmer, small business owner, nurse, bus driver, watchman (i.e. had an income), and couldn’t afford to buy land in the 1960s/70s IF IT WAS HIS TOP PRIORITY.

My position is that no such person exists/existed.

What if someone says they didn’t have a job then, and they didn’t have land, therefore they couldn’t farm, hence they couldn’t have an income? Even today in Kenya, you don’t have to own land to farm.

I personally know many people who started by working on other peoples’ farms, graduated to leasing land to farm, and finally graduated to owning land.

Okay. So, everyone could afford to buy land. But some ended up with thousands of acres!

Land Sizes

If someone told you he wants to leave Kenya next week, and he is ready to sell his property worth KES 5 million at KES 200K as long as it is cash, would you be a good Kenyan and announce to everyone about it?

Or, would you go looking to borrow money from all possible sources and buy the property? It is called capitalism.

Do you think capitalism is bad, and you are a good person who doesn’t like capitalism?

How much do you earn per month? More than KES 30K? Do you know that the average Kenyan earns less than 10K per month? What have you done about that?

If we consider the size of Kenya, subtract the areas occupied by forests, game parks, roads, schools, mountains, lakes etc. and divide the land equally among all Kenyans, then each person would receive about 1 acre.

Do you own 2 acres, and feel a person who owns 2000 acres should share it with you? Well, the person who owns 0 acres thinks you should share your 2 acres with him…

That is why there is no place in the world where there is fair wealth distribution (including land distribution). Only in socialist countries i.e. countries where the government owns all the land (and even there, many citizens would tell you some are more equal than other).

Solution to (Major) Land Issues in Kenya

My own family was dispossessed of all land during the colonial period. Was that fair? Absolutely not.

However, I know that my family did not own that land 1,000 years ago.

The point I am making is that from time to time, societies have to sit down and analyse situations based on prevailing circumstances.

I suggest that Kenya should enact a law stating that any land over 100 acres CANNOT be subdivided without authority from National Land Commission (or similar body).

The NLC (or similar body) would be guided by clear guidelines as to reasons allowing land subdivision for parcels 100 acres or more: e.g. for building public amenities, expansion of cities/towns etc.

Therefore, if a person has a farm of 100 acres or more, and wants to subdivide it to his 5 children, he cannot do so. However, he can sell the land to a single buyer (individual/company) and divide the money among his children, who can then buy smaller parcels of land elsewhere, or invest in whatever way they wish.

Apart from safeguarding food security, this law will eliminate the issue of incitement, whereby people are told that if they chase Mr X away, they will subdivide his land among themselves. Note that, the politicians who incite villagers to invade other peoples’ land because they are “foreigners”, do not do so because of altruistic reasons.

They know that if the eviction were to succeed, they would be able to allocate their own relatives significant sections of that land, to hold it on the politicians’ behalf. The peasants would be the losers.

But, with the banning of subdivision of large estates, incitement wouldn’t work. If, however, politicians in a certain county feel that a certain “foreign” land owner should let a local own the farm, all they have to do is invite all tycoons from that county to a meeting, and request one of them to buy the farm (there is no county in Kenya without some rich persons).

If none of the tycoons wants to buy the farm, then the politicians should consider themselves stupid.

If however, one tycoon agrees to buy the farm owned by the “foreigner”, but cannot afford the asking price, the politicians can organise a harambee for local people to top up the remaining amount.

If local people refuse to participate in that harambee, then the politicians should consider themselves to be both stupid and myopic.

Eliminating Poverty

Subdivision of large farms would lead to less food in the country, and more poverty. Subdivision of large ranches would mean less employment opportunities.

In the case of places where people keep plenty of cattle, and feel that if neighbouring ranches were given to them, then it would rain honey, they are very mistaken. The problem they have is caused by BAD land management, not lack of land.

Have they tried planting/storing fodder to feed their cattle during drought? No? Why? What is the county government doing about that? By the way, I believe creation of counties is one of the best constitutional amendments in Kenya ever.

If the biggest problem in a county is lack of water, they can concentrate on solving that problem. If its lack of seeds, same case. If it is lack of animal feed, the county should be able to help solve that problem if they wanted.

Providing affordable housing is one of the best ways to tackle poverty. The national government housing policy is great. Counties also need to chip in and build a certain number of apartments/houses per year for the most needy in the county.

There is currently a monthly stipend paid to the elderly and the disabled. Counties should now provide some stipend to the extremely poor in their county. I know that there are some counties that already provide food to the very poor. Congratulations.

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tana
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Land Issue in Kenya: Correcting Online Lies

Post by tana » Wed Jul 03, 2019 7:45 am

I personally know someone who was given free land by the government somewhere in Nyandarua county in the 1970s. Yes, Mzee Jomo Kenyatta’s government settled thousands of displaced people in the 1960s and 70s. You didn’t know about this? It is because of the online anti-Jomo Kenyatta propaganda pushed by THE GLOBAL BIGSHOTS.

Of course, only a relatively small percentage of the landless could be given free land. My family was among the majority that did not get free land.

Back to the villager I knew who was given free land by the government in Nyandarua county. This gentleman lived there for only a short period of time, before selling that land at a throw-away price (since very few people were willing to spend even a shilling buying “worthless” land there). Reason? He said the place was too cold and also too remote.

Anyone interested in this topic can do a quick research to find out how much an acre of land in the remote parts of Nyandarua was worth circa 1970. One goat could buy 2 acres? 5 acres?

I would prefer that the price of an acre of land then, was given in terms of number of goats required to buy the land, so that we can make a good comparison with the present.

Note that those places that some people did not want to settle then, now the land there is worth a premium.

I also know another person working a low paying job in Nairobi and bought land in Maai Mahiu - about 60 Kilometres from Nairobi - around 1970. The land then in that area was extremely cheap. Anyone can confirm from older people from that area.

An acre in Maai Mahiu was worth 2 goats? 3 goats, circa 1970?

In the early 1980s, this Nairobi gentleman built a house on the Maai Mahiu farm, and wanted the family to move there. His entire family refused. Reason? They said the place was too remote.

I have seen very many articles online written in such a way as to suggest some people grabbed all the land, leaving others landless. As you can see from this thread, that is an outright lie. There was land available for buying, at very cheap prices.

Ask people who were adults around 1970, and they will tell you that there were very many people who couldn’t buy very cheaply-valued land a mere 60 Kilometres from their home - even if they could afford it - because it was “too far away”, or “too remote”.

The problem is that, since the lies about land issues in Kenya are given prominence by the search engines and social media platforms, Kenyans born in the 1990s take them as fact.

The reality is that, many of the farms Kenyans consider as prime land nowadays, was considered as useless wasteland 50 years ago. The people who “saw ahead”, bought those “remote” parcels of land at a pittance.

These stories need to be told, because the online lies about Kenya are meant to create hate and resentment among Kenyans.

When people are continuously fed lies, and made to hate others based on those lies, they can easily be incited to fight among themselves. This is what happened in 2008, leading to the death of more than 1,000 Kenyan peasants. Note: not a single politician (e.g. MCA, MP) or election official died during the violence of 2008.

By the way, the election was just the trigger, not the cause of the violence.

About Kenya Freedom Fighters allegedly ignored by Mzee Jomo Kenyatta’s government. I do not know of a single person, among the top Freedom Fighters, who was “ignored” or “betrayed” by the Kenyan government after independence.

Yet, this FAKE NEWS is so prominent online that I have even seen non-Kenyans stating it as fact. Here, I must congratulate THE GLOBAL BIGSHOTS for a job well done. Changing a peoples’ history, and making millions to believe it, is no mean achievement.

The real stories of the top Freedom Fighters allegedly ignored by Kenya government after independence, goes like this: The General was given 40 - 100 acres FREE by the government in the 1960s.

He later divides it among his children. Let us say he has 7 children. Each child receives, say, 8 acres. These children are now old people. They divided the land among their children. How much land will each of these children receive?

Therefore, you will see these grandchildren and say, “their grandfather was neglected by the government…”

NOTE: Even if you are given a lot of money, if your children do not become economically independent when they attain adulthood, and depend solely on you, then that money will get depleted real quick.

I believe Mzee Jomo Kenyatta was an extremely wise man (Of course, he had his flaws like everybody else).

Consider the following: Most of the war in the country in the 1950s (and displacement of people) was concentrated in Central Kenya. If Mzee Kenyatta’s government had decided to settle all the displaced persons, or pay all the Freedom Fighters (significant percentage of the people of Central Kenya), it would have meant that almost the whole of Kenya’s budget would have been used for the benefit of only the people of Central Kenya.

How would other Kenyans have felt? Would Kenya have survived?

If a Kenyan born in the 1990s reads this article, I hope he/she can ask his/her father/grandfather or any other relative who was an adult around 1970: “I have read somewhere that you could have bought an acre of land at certain places in Kenya in 1970 at the price of a goat. Is it true? Why didn’t you buy a few acres then?”

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tana
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Land Issue in Kenya: Correcting Online Lies

Post by tana » Thu Jul 18, 2019 7:43 am

The issue of land grabbing in Kenya is actually a very straightforward matter. But because THE GLOBAL BIGSHOTS don’t wish Kenya well, they have, over the past 20 years or so, promoted Kenyans and “Kenyan” websites who deliberately muddle up this issue, and use their “alternative facts” to settle political scores.

Kenyans, and Kenyan websites, that report this land issue correctly are automatically shadow banned by the search engines and social media platforms that are owned/controlled by THE GLOBAL BIGSHOTS.

Contrary to what the THE GLOBAL BIGSHOTS-allied Kenyans and top-ranked “Kenyan” websites claim - and this FAKE NEWS has been pushed so hard by THE GLOBAL BIGSHOTS till many Kenyans believe it - most of Kenya’s land grabbing happened in the 1990s. And it was prevalent across the political divide.

“Parts of Karura Forest in Nairobi were grabbed between 1994 and 1999 by Kanu bigwigs who shared an estimated 2,000 acres of public land and sold it to private companies, triggering an environmental war with Greenbelt Movement leader, Prof Wangari Maathai, whose determination to save the forest saw her win the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize.”
https://www.nation.co.ke/news/Karura-Fo ... index.html

This is how it was done: The board of management of a school/college note that the school/college only utilises, say, 50 acres out of the 120 acres that it owns. They sit down with the local MP, councillor (current MCA), chief etc.

They decide to hive off the unused 70 acres for themselves.

Who would complain that school/college land has been grabbed, when all “opinion leaders” in that area have been “taken care of”? After subdividing the land among themselves, they would then sell it to other greedy people, who would be aware that it is grabbed land, but since it is being sold cheap…

When the school/college seeks to expand, the new management realises there is no room for expansion.

This is how forests, agricultural research farms, sports stadiums, cemeteries, roads…were grabbed. Yes, even roads were grabbed in the 1990s. I know of a road I had used many times, only to one day find it fenced off and turned into a cul-de-sac.

These are public lands that can be recovered easily because the purported owners do not have genuine title deeds.

A Kenyan born in the 1990s would be shocked if he ever read this article. No wonder this forum is censored online.

How can such important information not appear on any top-ranked Kenyan website? How come all Kenyan social media “influencers” do not know about this, if it was so prevalent less than 30 years ago?

It is called RIGGING - of search results. Who is capable of doing that? ONLY THE GLOBAL BIGSHOTS.

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tana
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Land Issue in Kenya: Correcting Online Lies

Post by tana » Sun Sep 08, 2019 3:41 am

MaasaiMauforest.jpg
MaasaiMauforest.jpg (39.25 KiB) Viewed 21 times
“For Ms Martha Keter, 63, a retired teacher who invested all her pension to buy land in Maasai Mau, moving out of the forest is the most painful experience in her life.”

“My husband and I sold everything and bought this 63 acres of land from Ole Ntutu family and it is painful I am leaving after being declared an illegal squatter,” said Ms Keter a former Ndaraweta Girls Secondary School principal in Bomet County in 2016.

“She said she bought the land from Sisiyian ranch, which is owned by the ole Ntutu family, in 2002.”
nation.co.ke/counties/narok/Woman-begs-Uhuru-to-spare-her-land-in-Mau-/1183318-5264702-plfy58/index.html

I notice that the Daily Nation has not said how much Ms Keter and her husband paid for the land. What is known is that only a millionaire could have afforded to buy 63 acres of extremely fertile land in that area (Central Rift Valley), LEGALLY, with a “CLEAN TITLE”, in 2002.

If someone offers to sell you land at sh 30K per acre, in an area where land goes at sh 150K per acre, shouldn’t you become suspicious?

Ms Keter’s family were conned. They should pursue the person who sold them the land, and take him to court. That person is the one who should compensate them.

Unfortunately, Ms Keter’s case is not unique. There are many people who have been sold forest land, road reserves etc. at very low prices (of course).

The people who have ILLEGALLY settled in Mau Forest over the years, have been misused by politicians looking for their votes. Very sad situation.

This time, the government must take back ALL grabbed forest land in Maasai Mau, and other places, too. In future, Kenyans will know that, even if politicians purport to guarantee you protection if you occupy forest (or any other government) land, a time will come when you will be evicted.

This will bring to an end the land grabbing corruption.

NB: Quite sad to see some politicians arguing like it is the first time people are being evicted from government forests (or other government lands), while this is something that has happened all over the country, over the years.

Change of Culture: Kenyans will continue to be conned, as long as they latch onto the false belief that every person must own a farm (This is impossible, anywhere in the world).

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